There are 5 types of hepatitis - A, B, C, D, and E - each caused by a different hepatitis virus.
Hepatitis A is caused by eating food and drinking water infected with a virus called "HAV".
Hepatitis A is a disease of poor personal hygiene, bad sanitation, overcrowding, poverty. Most cases of hepatitis A are found in 3rd World countries, outside the United States.
Hepatitis A is a mild, self-limiting disease, which usually resolves on its own without treatment in 4 to 8 weeks. Most people who get hepatitis A are never even aware of it because they never show any symptoms. (1)
Hepatitis B is spread through contact with an infected person's blood, semen or other body fluid.
Hepatitis D is caused by the virus "HDV". You can only get hepatitis D if you are already infected with hepatitis B.
You get hepatitis E by drinking water infected with the virus. This type of hepatitis doesn't occur often in the United States.
Finally, hepatitis C is spread the same way as hepatitis B, through contact with an infected person's blood, semen or other body fluid. Like hepatitis B, hepatitis C causes swelling of the liver and can cause liver damage which can lead to cancer .
At least 2.8 million Americans carry the hepatitis C virus, making hepatitis the most common blood-borne infection in America. (2)
Hepatitis C is serious for some people, but not for others. Most persons who get hepatitis C carry the virus for the rest of their lives.
Most people infected with the hepatitis C virus do not die during the first decade of infection. Those infected are at an increased risk of dying from a liver-related illness, particularly if they consumed excess alcohol.
The average time from obtaining the virus to developing cirrhosis has been estimated to be about 30 years.
Some people infected with hepatitis C progress rapidly to advanced liver disease, while others remain unaffected.
Hepatitis C and alcohol abuse rank as the leading causes of liver disease .
Fortunately, hepatitis C seems to cause problems later, rather than sooner. This gives a person infected plenty of time to optimize their immune system .
The first step toward this goal is usually implementing a healing diet .
Once a proper diet is being followed, it's critical to minimize other toxic influences to the immune system . Amalgam fillings are typically present and ideally should be removed along with a comprehensive mercury detoxification program . Eliminating toxins from the body , in particular pesticides through sauna detoxification is also important.
Restoring emotional balance is critical to strengthening the immune system. I favor - and have benefited myself from - the profound teachings of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, founder of the transcendental meditation movement .
Studies (3) have shown that lipoic acid at 200 mg 3 times/day and selenium 200-600 mcg/day appear to be an effective combination. In my opinion, the best price for high quality lipoic acid can be found here , and high quality selenium can be found here . I also like Puritan Pride's special promotions , which they hold regularly.
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(1) Merck Manual, p 377
(2) Archives of Internal Medicine October 8, 2001;161:2231-2237
(3) Med Klin (Munich). 1999 Oct 15;94 Suppl 3:84-9.
© 2005 Healing Daily